The distal semimembranosus complex: normal MR anatomy, variants, biomechanics and pathology
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To describe the normal MR anatomy and variations of the distal semimembranosus tendinous arms and the posterior oblique ligament as seen in the three orthogonal planes, to review the biomechanics of this complex and to illustrate pathologic examples.
Results and conclusion
The distal semimembranosus tendon divides into five tendinous arms named the anterior, direct, capsular, inferior and the oblique popliteal ligament. These arms intertwine with the branches of the posterior oblique ligament in the posterior medial aspect of the knee, providing stability. This tendon-ligamentous complex also acts synergistically with the popliteus muscle and actively pulls the posterior horn of the medial meniscus during knee flexion. Pathologic conditions involving this complex include complete and partial tears, insertional tendinosis, avulsion fractures and bursitis.
KeywordsKnee MRI Normal anatomy Semimembranosus tendon Tendon tear
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